“Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.” – Ecclesiastes 7:9
In the 1975 Masters Tennis Tournament in Stockholm, Sweden, tennis star Arthur Ashe ahead 4-1 in the third and decisive set of their round-robin match with Romanian-born Ilie Nastase, sometimes dubbed “Nasty” Nastase for his flamboyant on-court antics.
Behind in the match, Nastase went into his act again, stalling and arguing, cursing, taunting, and acting like a madman. Finally, Arthur Ashe put down his racket and walked off the court, saying, “I’ve had enough. I’m at the point where I’m afraid I’ll lose control.”
“But Arthur,” cried the umpire, “You’ll default the match.”
“I don’t care,” replied Ashe, “I’d rather lose that than my self-respect.”
Agreeing that Nastase’s unruly behavior had unfairly interrupted the match and driven Ashe to the sidelines, referee Horst Klosterkemper came up with a solution to the fiasco. He announced that Nastase was disqualified. He refused to condone Nastase’s bullying tactics and he insisted that Nastase default the match for his unsportsman-like conduct. Arthur Ashe won both in the game of tennis–and in the game of life.
Do you control your anger or does your anger control you? Today in prayer, give any problem of anger to the Lord and ask for His Spirit to control you.
“He that would be angry and not sin, must be angry at nothing but sin.” – William Secker
God’s Word: “A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control.” – Proverbs 29:11
By Peter Kennedy, Copyright 2003, Devotional E-Mail DEVOTIONS IN ECCLESIATES AND SONG OF SOLOMON firstname.lastname@example.org